Sunday Puzzle: Vowel Play NPR's Renee Montagne and puzzle master Will Shortz play the puzzle this week with Rick Peterson of East Windsor, N.J.
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Sunday Puzzle: Vowel Play

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Sunday Puzzle: Vowel Play

Sunday Puzzle: Vowel Play

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RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And right now it's time to play The Puzzle.

(MUSIC)

MONTAGNE: Joining me is Will Shortz. He is puzzle editor of The New York Times and WEEKEND EDITION's puzzlemaster. Good morning, Will.

WILL SHORTZ, BYLINE: Good morning, Renee. Welcome back.

MONTAGNE: Thank you. Glad to be here and doing the puzzle with you all. Why don't you go ahead and tell us about last week's challenge?

SHORTZ: Yeah, I said, name two parts of the human body. Say them one after the other outloud. And the result, phonetically, will name something delicious to eat in seven letters. What is it? And the answer is brownie, which is a combination of brow and knee.

MONTAGNE: OK. Well, we had more than 400 responses, and this week's winner is Rick Peterson from East Windsor, N.J.. Congratulations and welcome to the program.

RICK PETERSON: Thank you very much. I've been waiting for this.

MONTAGNE: But I gather you have a little bit of an experience, sort of via a family member.

SHORTZ: I have not won the puzzle before, but my genes have.

(LAUGHTER)

PETERSON: Identical twin brother Dave, who was on the air in March of 2000.

MONTAGNE: Oh, my goodness. That would have been back with Liane Hansen.

PETERSON: Must have been.

MONTAGNE: OK. Well, Rick, here's to your good genes on playing The Puzzle. Will, take it away.

SHORTZ: All right. Rick and Renee, every answer today is a made-up two-word phrase in which the first word has a long-I sound. Change the long-I to a long-A sound and phonetically you'll get the second word in the phrase. For example, if I said an awful covering for the face, you would say, vile veil.

PETERSON: All right.

SHORTZ: No. 1, precipitation along a German river.

PETERSON: Rhine rain.

SHORTZ: That's it. Here's your next one - smart methods.

PETERSON: Wise ways.

SHORTZ: That's it. Cornrows on a woman who's about to get married.

PETERSON: Bride's braids.

SHORTZ: Bride's braids, yes. Now the words in each of the following answers have two syllables. And here's the first of these - one who looks at Old Faithful.

PETERSON: Geyser gazer.

SHORTZ: That's it. A turncoat who's more hackneyed.

PETERSON: A triter traitor.

SHORTZ: That's it. One who ranks authors.

PETERSON: Ranks authors - a writer rater.

SHORTZ: A writer rater is it. Low land full of buffalo.

PETERSON: Low land full of buffalo. Buffalo are bison, so I'd say bison basin.

SHORTZ: A bison basin is it. Very powerful sailor.

PETERSON: Sailor. This is getting tougher.

SHORTZ: You want to jump in, Renee?

MONTAGNE: Well, just how about - how about a sailor, what do you think? What do you think, matey?

SHORTZ: There you go.

MONTAGNE: (Laughing).

SHORTZ: Well, there's the second word.

PETERSON: It's making me think of a pirate, but...

SHORTZ: Yeah. Go ahead, Renee.

PETERSON: Tell me.

MONTAGNE: A mighty matey.

SHORTZ: A mighty matey is it.

PETERSON: Mighty - oh, all right.

SHORTZ: All right. How about an insignificant person from Augusta?

PETERSON: From Augusta?

SHORTZ: Yeah.

PETERSON: A minor Mainer.

SHORTZ: A minor Mainer is right. And one last question. Name a U.S. president who becomes another U.S. president if you change the long-I sound to a long-A.

PETERSON: My wife and I are into presidents. We've visited all the sights we can think of wherever we go places, so I know Tyler and Taylor.

SHORTZ: Tyler, Taylor. Nice job.

MONTAGNE: This was amazing, Rick. I have to say that, to me, was a very hard puzzle. And you just rolled through it with - bare a pause.

SHORTZ: He's got the genes.

MONTAGNE: (Laughing) Well, congratulations for playing our puzzle today. You'll get a WEEKEND EDITION lapel pin as well as puzzle books and games. You can read all about it at npr.org/puzzle. And what member station do you listen to?

PETERSON: WHYY in Philadelphia most often. And could I just say, my brother Dave wanted me to tell you that though he and his wife hadn't listened to The Puzzle before he submitted - it was his first one - they've listened ever since. And he used those reference books all the time at the dinner table.

MONTAGNE: Well, that's wonderful. Rick Peterson from East Windsor, N.J., thank you again for playing The Puzzle.

PETERSON: Thank you very much for having me.

MONTAGNE: And, Will, tell us next week's challenge.

SHORTZ: Yes, it comes from listener Mark Oshin of Portland, Ore.. Think of a familiar two-word phrase in eight letters - with four letters in each word. The first word starts with M, as in Mary. Move the first letter of the second word to the end and you'll get a regular 8-letter word, which, amazingly, other than the M, doesn't share any sounds with the original two-word phrase. What phrase is it?

So here it is again - two-word phrase, four, four. The first word starts with M. Move the first letter of the second word to the end and you get a regular eight-letter word, which, amazingly, other than the M, doesn't share any sounds with the original two-word phrase. What phrase is it?

MONTAGNE: And when you have the answer, go to our website, npr.org/puzzle, and click on the Submit Your Answer link. Now, remember, just one entry please. I think you all know that. Our deadline for entries is this Thursday, Aug. 2 at 3 p.m. Eastern. Include a phone number where we can reach you about that time. If you are the winner, you will get a call. And you will get to play on the air with the puzzle editor of The New York Times and WEEKEND EDITION's puzzlemaster, Will Shortz.

Will, it's been a pleasure talking to you again.

SHORTZ: Thanks, Renee.

(MUSIC)

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